As Creative Entrepreneurs and Solopreneurs, we work and work and market and market and then a possible opportunity comes our way BUT it is not QUITE the right thing. Is it a great opportunity not to be missed or is it mission creep? How to know?
Here are some questions you can ask yourself:
- Does this project/work fit my mission?
- Is this project/work the type of work for which I want to be known?
- Is this project/work the type of work that I want to do next?
- Will this project/work support my focus and lead to other jobs I want?
- Will this project/work develop my self-esteem?
- Will this project/work satisfy my creative spirit?
- Will this work fulfill my goals?
- Am I the best person for this work?
- Is this project/work the best possible use of my time considering my long term goals?
- Am I taking this project/work because I am afraid and I need money?
- Am I taking this project/work because it sounds like fun and it is an exciting diversion?
One of the problems we have as creative entrepreneurs is that we like what is new, different and exciting. One of my clients said, “I get distracted by shiny things.” Is this project a distraction or is it right on track and on focus.
When you take on projects that are off your mission and off your focus then they are really distractions, not career moves. A career move is one that is going to lead you to other wonderful jobs- other work that is right on target for you and your skills and your dreams and aspirations. We all know one thing leads to another. The same is true of work. One project leads to another. The people who see you doing work that is not quite the right thing are going to refer you to other “not quite right” projects.
One of the problems with mission creep is that often the referrals to the jobs that are not quite right come from those who love and support us and are giving us ideas and referrals because they do not want to see us suffering or worrying. So, they make suggestions. However, if we have not been ABSOLUTELY CRYSAL CLEAR about our focus and our niche, they, because they are not certain about what we want, send out random ideas that they think are what we want. These random ideas are both help and temptations. Even if they are the wrong ideas, they tell us that we have not yet gotten our message out clearly. After all, if our message was clear, the wrong referrals would not be made- what that means is that we have more work to do. They are temptations because sometimes we just get scared and allow our focus to drift- take the wrong work for the wrong reasons. Remember, test new ideas against the questions I have outlined and be honest in your answers. If the project/work is not right for you , say NO. I promise that when you have the courage to say no to the wrong work, when you stay out of mission creep, the right work will show up. (Because you are finally clear!)
Share the above questions with other creative entrepreneurs or solopreneurs that may be tempted to follow “distractions” so that they can find the perfect project/work.